Fisherfolk group denounces militarization of coastal community, set to protest Bulacan airport project groundbreaking

Save Taliptip
A fisherman tending to his nets in Taliptip. (Photo by Leon Dulce/Kalikasan PNE)

By ADAM ANG
Bulatlat.com

MANILA — Fisherfolk community leaders decried the alleged encampment of a certain military unit in their coastal community in Bulakan, Bulacan weeks before the groundbreaking of San Miguel Corporation’s (SMC) Bulacan airport project.

Alleged soldiers have entered sitio Bunotan in barangay Taliptip last December 28 on board two small boats and set up a detachment on January 9 as they made rounds in adjacent villages sitio Kinse and sitio Dapdap, according to a statement released by fisherfolk group Pamalakaya Bulacan.

“With the military on their side, SMC has felt emboldened now to expel us from our community,” Pamalakaya Bulacan Spokesperson Rodel Alvarez said in a statement.

Related story: ‘SMC airport project to worsen flooding, displace families in Bulacan’

“With military aid, SMC President Ramon Ang can be assured that their airport project can take off smoothly – but we won’t let that happen as we will persevere in our campaign to get this destructive project junked in various platforms,” Central Luzon environmental network Akap Ka Manila Bay Spokesperson Bishop Rogelio Martinez added.

Environmental group Center for Environmental Concerns, in a separate statement, also denounced the alleged militarization as “one of the many offenses on environmental defenders,” and called for their immediate pull out from the community.

Related story: ‘We will go hungry, die from worse flooding’ if SMC buries part of Manila Bay for land

“People who stand against environmentally destructive projects are being harassed, intimidated and worse, even murdered by state forces,” CEC said.

Taliptip fisherfolk and supporters are set to hold a protest action on January 15 during the groundbreaking ceremony of the Bulacan airport project. ()

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